Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

No. 902.-14 September, 1861.

CONTENTS.

[ocr errors]

PAGE. 643 659

66

1. A Discourse of Immaturity, by A. K. H. B., Fraser's Magazine, 2. More Words from Simancas,

Mr. Froude here gives the original letters, which are thought insufficient to

support his charges against Queen Elizabeth ; to whom we make our

apology for having copied the scandal, in No. 897. 3. Ladies Burnt to Death,

Press, 4. A Photographer's Story, .

Ladies' Companion, 5. The National Crisis,

Christian Review,

674 675 683

POETRY. — Among the Deaths, 642.

Short ARTICLES.–Orange Peel, etc., 658. New Bank of Cod, 658. Potato Disease, 673. German Universities, 673. Full Trade will not ensure Peace, 682. Goyon and Mérode, 688. “ Curiosities of Literature,” 688. Social Science Congress, 688.

- The Lives of the Engineers,” 688. Mr. Buckle's new Volume, 688.

PUBLISHED EVERY SATURDAY BY LIT TELL, SON, & CO., BOSTON.

For Six Dollars a year, in advance, remitted directly to the Publishers, the LIVING Age will be punctually forwarded free of postage.

Complete sets of the First Series, in thirty-six volumes, and of the Second Series, in twenty volumes, handsomely bound, packed in neat boxes, and delivered in all the principal cities, free of expense of freight, are for sale at two dollars a volume.

AXY Volume may be had separately, at two dollars, bonnd, or a dollar and a half in numbers.

ANY NUMBER may be had for 13 cents; and it is well worth while for subscribers or purchasers to complete any broken volupies they may have, and thus greatly enhance tireir value.

II.

From Once a Week. Where the starlit heaven o'er the moor shines AMONG THE DEATHS.

white,

And all her heaven is on Richard's face. I.

X. “OF fever, in Africa, Richard Brand."

The words start clear thro' the twilight gloom: His arm is round her; she feels his kiss; The paper drops from her shrinking hand,

And her trembling breath comes thick and And the presence of death fills all the room.

low
With the familiar foolish bliss,

The freshness, the passion of long ago.
A noble room, where the firelight falls,-

XI.
At fitful intervals falls and fades,-
On curtains of silk, on gilded walls,

What has she now? Her husband's name;
On gleaming marble, crimson brocades. Settlements ; diamonds; five hundred friends

To come to her parties ; her beauty's fame;

Lord Arthur's homage. And so it ends. III. She waits alone for her husband's guest, Lord Arthur,-he has dined with them often of late,

No; something more. Var away, up-stairs,

Are her children. She sees them every day, She waits, in jewels and velvet drest,

I believe;—but with so many vital cares As befits her beauty and her estate.

Of dances and dinners, what are they?

XII.

[blocks in formation]

From Fraser's Magazine. that price rises and falls. I am not going A DISCOURSE OF IMMATURITY; to take you to the green fields in which the OR, CONCERNING VEAL.

creature which yielded the veal was fed, or The man who, in his progress through to discourse of the blossoming hawthorn life, has listened with attention to the con- hedges from whose midst it was reft away. versation of human beings; who has care- Neither shall I speak of the rustic life, the fully read the writings of the best English toils, cares, and fancies of the farm-house near authors; who has made himself well ac- which it spent its brief lifetime. The Veal quainted with the history and usages of his of which I intend to speak is Moral Veal, or native land; and who has meditated much (to speak with entire accuracy), Veal Intelon all he has seen and read ; must have been lectual, Moral, and Æsthetical. By Veal I led to the firm conviction that by Veal, understand the immature productions of the those who speak the English language in- human mind; immature compositions, imtend to denote the flesh of calves ; and that mature opinions, feelings, and tastes. I wish by a calf is intended an immature ox or cow. to think of the work, the views, the fancies, A calf is a creature in a temporary and pro- the emotions, which are yielded by the hugressive stage of its being. It will not al- man soul in its immature stages: while the ways be a calf; if it live long enough, it will calf (so to speak) is only growing into the assuredly cease to be a calf. And if impa- ox; while the clever boy, with his absurd tient man, arresting the creature at that opinions and feverish feelings and fancies, is stage, should consign it to the hands of him developing into the mature and sober-mindwhose business it is to convert the sentiented man. And if I could but rightly set out animal into the impassive and unconscious the thoughts which have at many different meat, the nutriment which the creature will times occurred to me on this matter, if one afford will be nothing more than immature could catch and fix the vague glimpses and beef. There may be many qualities of Veal ; passing intuitions of solid unchanging truth, the calf which yields it may die at very dif- if the subject on which one has thought long ferent stages in its physical and moral devel- and felt deeply were always that on which opment; but provided only it die as a calf- one could write best, and could bring out to porvided only that its meat can fitly be styled the sympathy of others what a man himself Veal—this will be characteristic of it, that has felt, what an excellent essay this would the meat shall be immature meat. It may be! But it will not be so; for as I try to be very good, very nutritious and palatable ; grasp the thoughts I would set out, they some people may like it better than beef, would melt away and elude me. It is like and may feed upon it with the liveliest sat- trying to catch and keep the rainbow hues isfaction ; but when it is fairly and deliber- you have seen the sunshine cast upon the ately put to us, it must be admitted, even by spray of a waterfall, when you try to catch such as like Veal the best, that Veal is but an the tone, the thoughts, the feelings, the atimmature production of nature. I take Veal mosphere of early youth. therefore, as the emblem of Immaturity; of There can be no question at all as to the that which is now in a stage out of which it fact, that clever young men and women, must grow; of that which, as time goes on, when their minds begin to open, when they will grow older, will probably grow better, begin to think for themselves, do pass will certainly grow very different. That is through a stage of mental development what I mean by Veal.

which they by and by quite outgrow; and And now, my reader and friend, you will entertain opinions and beliefs, and feel emodiscern the subject about which I trust we tions, on which afterwards they look back are to have some pleasant and not unprofit- with no sympathy or approval. This is a able thought together. You will readily be- fact as certain as that a calf grows into an liere that my subject is not that material ox, or that veal, if spared to grow, will beVeal which may be beheld and purchased in come beef. But no analogy between the the butchers' shops. I am not now to treat material and the moral must be pushed too of its varied qualities, of the sustenance which far. There are points of difference between it yields, of the price at which it may be material and moral Veal. A calf knows it is procured, or of the laws according to which a calf. It may think itself bigger and wiser than an ox, but it knows it is not an ox. man writing in an ambitious and rhetorical And if it be a reasonable calf, modest, style, and prompted to do so by the sponand free from prejudice, it is well aware taneous fervor of your heart and readiness of that the joints it will yield after its de- your imagination, you will feel now little mise, will be very different from those of sympathy even with the literary style of that the stately and well-consolidated ox which early composition ; you will see extrararuminates in the rich pasture near it. But gance and bombast, where once you saw only the human boy often thinks he is a man, eloquence and graphic power. And as for and even more than a man. He fancies that the graver and more important matter of the his mental stature is as big and as solid as thought of the discourse, I think you will be it will ever become. He fancies that his aware of a certain indefinable shallowness mental productions—the poems and essays and crudity. Your growing experience has he writes, the political and social views he borne you beyond it. Somehow you feel it forms, the moods of feeling with which he does not come home to you, and suit you as regards things are just what they may al- you would wish it should. It will not do. ways be, just what they ought always to be. That old sermon you cannot preach now, till If spared in this world, and if he be one of you have entirely re-cast and re-written it. those whom years make wiser, the day comes But you had no such notion when you wrote when he looks back with amazement and the sermon. You were satisfied with it. shame on those early mental productions. You thought it even better than the disHe discerns now how immature, absurd, courses of men as clever as yourself, and ten and extravagant they were; in brief, how or fifteen years older. Your case was as vealy. But at the time, he had not the least though the youthful calf should walk beside idea that they were so. He had entire con- the sturdy ox, and think itself rather bigger. fidence in himself; not a misgiving as to his Let no clever young reader fancy from own ability and wisdom. You, clever young what has been said, that I am about to make student of eighteen years old, when you an onslaught upon clever young men. I wrote your prize essay, fancied that in remember too distinctly how bitter and inthought and style it was very like Macaulay ; deed ferocious I used to feel, about eleven or and not Macaulay in that stage of vealy bril- twelve years ago, when I have heard men of liancy in which he wrote his essay on Milton, more than middle age and less than middling not Macaulay the fairest and most promising ability speak with contemptuous depreciation of calves, but Macaulay the stateliest and of the productions and doings of men conmost beautiful of oxen. Well, read over siderably their juniors, and vastly their supeyour essay now at thirty, and tell us what riors ; describing them as boys and as clerer you think of it.

And you, clever, warm-lads, with looks of dark malignity. There are hearted, enthusiastic young preacher of few more disgusting sights, than the envy and twenty-four, wrote your sermon ; it was very jealousy of their juniors, which may be seen ingenious, very brilliant in style, and you in various malicious, commonplace old men; never thought but that it would be felt by as there is hardly a more beautiful and mature-minded Christian people as suiting pleasing sight than the old man hailing, and their case, as true to their inmost experience. counselling, and encouraging the youthful You could not see why you might not preach genius which he knows far surpasses his as well as a man of forty. And if people in own. And I, my young friend of two-andmiddle age had complained that, eloquent as twenty, who, relatively to you, may be reyour preaching was, they found it suited garded as old, am going to assume no prethem better and profited them more to listen posterous airs of superiority. I do not claim to the plainer instructions of some good man to be a bit wiser than you; all I claim is to with gray hair, you would not have under- be older. I have outgrown your stage; but I stood their feeling; and you might perhaps was once such as you, and all my sympathies have attributed it to many motives rather than are with you yét. But it is a difficulty in the the true one. But now, at five-and-thirty, find way of the essayist, and of all who set out out the yellow manuscript, and read it care- opinions which they wish to be receired fully over ; and I will venture to say, that if and acted on by their fellow-creatures, that you were a really clever and eloquent young they seem, by the very act of offering ad

[ocr errors]

are

vice to others, to claim to be wiser and better seemed that you had thus written five years than those whom they advise. But in reality before! What Veal,—and oh, what a calf he it is not so. The opinions of the essayist or must have been who wrote it! It is a diffiof the preacher, if deserving of notice at all, cult question, to which the answer cannot be

so because of their inherent truth, and elicited, Who is the greatest fool in this not because he expresses them. Estimate world ? But every candid and sensible man them for yourself, and give them the weight of middle age knows thoroughly well the anwhich

you think their due. And be sure of swer to the question, Who was the greatest this, that the writer, if earnest and sincere, ad- fool that he himself ever knew? And after dressed all he said to himself as much as to any all, it is your diary, especially if you were one else. This is the thing which redeems all wont to introduce into it poetical remarks and didactic writing or speaking from the charge moral reflections, that will mainly help you to of offensive assumption and self-assertion. the humiliating conclusion. Other things, It is not for the preacher, whether of moral some of which I have already named, will or religious truth, to address his fellows as point in the same direction. Look at the outside sinners, worse than himself, and need- prize essays you wrote when you were a ing to be reminded of that of which he does boy at school ; look even at your earlier prize not need to be reminded. No, the earnest essays written at college (though of these last preacher preaches to himself as much as to I have something to say hereafter); look at any in the congregation ; it is from the pic- the letters you wrote home when away at ture ever before him in his own weak and school or even at college, especially if you wayward heart, that he learns to reach and de- were a clever boy, trying to write in a graphic scribe the hearts of all others, if, indeed, he do and witty fashion ; and if you have reached so at all. And it is the same with lesser things. sense at last (which some, it may be remarked,

It is curious and it is instructive to remark never do), I think you will blush even through how heartily men, as they grow towards mid- the unblushing front of manhood, and think dle age, despise themselves as they were a what a terrific, unutterable, conceited, infew years since. It is a bitter thing for a man tolerable blockhead you were. It is not till to confess that he is a fool; but it costs little people attain somewhat mature years that effort to declare that he was a fool a good they can rightly understand the wonderful while ago. Indeed, a tacit compliment to forbearance their parents must have shown in his present self is involved in the latter con- listening patiently to the frightful nonsense fession; it suggests the reflection what prog- they talked and wrote. I have already ress he has made, and how vastly he has spoken of sermons. If you go early into the improved, since then. When a man informs church, say at twenty-three or twenty-four, us that he was a very silly fellow in the year and write sermons regularly and diligently, 1851, it is assumed that he is not a very silly you know what landmarks they will be of fellow in the year 1861. It is as when the your mental progress. The first runnings of merchant with ten thousand a year, sitting at the stream are turbid, but it clears itself into his sumptuous table, and sipping his 41 sense and taste, month by month and year by claret, tells you how, when he came as a raw year. You wrote many sermons in your lad from the country, he used often to have first year or two; you preached them with to go without his dinner. He knows that the entire confidence in them, and they did really plate, the wine, the massively elegant apart- keep up the attention of the congregation in ment, the silent servants so alert yet so im- a remarkable way. You accumulate in a passive, will appear to join in chorus with the box a store of that valuable literature and obvious suggestion, “You see he has not to theology, and when by and by you go to go without his dinner now!” Did you ever, another parish, you have a comfortable feelwhen twenty years old, look back at the ing that you have a capital stock to go on diary you kept when you were sixteen ; or with. You think that any Monday morning when twenty-five, at the diary you kept when when you have the prospect of a very busy twenty; or at thirty, at the diary you kept week, or when you feel very weary, you may when twenty-five? Was not your feeling a resolve that you shall write no sermon that singular mixture of humiliation and self-com- week, but just go and draw forth one from placency? What extravagant, silly stuff it the box. I have already said what you will

« ZurückWeiter »